They Have a Story | Memorial Day Edition

I'm changing things up a bit. Since it's almost Memorial Day, this month's edition of They Have a Story involves three pictures from three different wars — The American Civil War, WWI, and WWII. So grab your pens and choose a picture! It's time to write their stories.

What is They Have a Story? It's a monthly historical fiction link up hosted by yours truly. Once a month I'll post a historical picture. Your job (and mine ... I'm totally doing this!) is to write a short story inspired by it. It can be as short or as long as you like. Have fun with it! Post the monthly picture, your story, and blog button on your blog, then link up. Let’s see how many different stories we can get from the same picture!

 Photo 1

Photo 2

Photo 3

"They died to save their country and they only saved the world." - G. K. Chesterton


Ain't We Got Fun's First Birthday

 "Bess and Gi were delightful; their natural, easy banter with each other leads you to think that Chapman and Putzke really are sisters!" — Mary

One year ago today Emily Chapman I published AIN'T WE GOT FUN, a novella set during the Great Depression about two completely different sisters, Bess and Gi Rowland. Emily Chapman's character (Bess) is the responsible younger sister who writes about life on the family farm in Kansas and a certain neighbor boy named Tom. My character, Gi, takes off for NYC to make a living, drinks too much coffee, and tries to avoid a certain young journalist. (Anne and Gilbert moment. You're perfect for each other, Gi!!) 

To celebrate our book birthday, the ebook is on sale for $0.99 until June 1st! Go grab a copy! 

Every morning, every evening
Ain't we got fun?
Not much money, oh, but honey
Ain't we got fun?


Curse You Perry The Platypus!

As a Christian writer, I've been faced with a controversial topic in Christian circles ... dun, dun, dun .... swearing. I read a post by Abigail Hartman who summed it up better than I did, but I still wanted to write something about it and share why I chose to use a few instances of profanity in my WWII novel, Resist. 

Using swear words in fiction should be like using salt or pepper in a recipe. A little goes a long way. If you use too much, you've ruined the recipe. If you use too little it doesn't have the strong flavor you were going for. And in many cases you don't need any at all. I close books that are bogged down in profanity. But if the (mild) swear words are used like salt or pepper and really show an emotion, I don't mind it. Most books don't need swear words. And yet, I feel like some do.

I think a well placed and sparely used swear can be used in fiction. I don't think it's "uncreative" on the author's part because if you're writing a true to life historical fiction (especially involving a war) someone along the line is gonna swear, gosh darn it. 

In Resist, there are Nazi soldiers beating Russians prisoners and sending Jews to their deaths. There's death and destruction on the Eastern Front and conspiratorial acts against the Nazis that could lead to execution. As I was writing Resist, the first swear word I've practically ever written sprang from my keyboard. I was a little surprised at myself. Did I really just write, "'What the hell?' Oh no. I'm a horrible human being!" *closes laptap and sets it on fire*

I struggled with this for a little while. "Am I doing the right thing? Is everyone going to be utterly appalled at me?" As I'm writing, sometimes I honestly feel that a certain swear word fits an intense bit of dialogue and sums up an emotion effectively. Then I come upon another point. I can easily see soldiers swearing, but my main character is an honorable, God-fearing, good person. He's a very moral human being.

Yes. A human being.

He makes mistakes. He says the wrong things. He's not perfect. Because of the utter misery of war and the horror his country in inflicting on others, he's so bottled up with emotions that it comes out in a curse.We shouldn't embrace swearing nor use big amounts of it in our books. But neither should we shy away from it if would make the dialogue stronger and more realistic. Just as all the horrors of war were real, so was swearing. And swearing because of the horrors of war is pretty understandable and real.I wanted to bring Hans to life with all his good qualities as well as his mistakes and human nature. If I think he would say "the damned Treaty of Versailles"  I'm going to write it down the way he would say it to keep the book authentic. 

I like the way Abigail Hartman puts it:

"God is not going to condemn us because we know a word, nor even, I do not believe, because we (or our characters) use a word. Attitude is far more important, and when it comes to it, slamming a door can be far more sinful than saying "damn." We can - should! - incorporate into our stories things of which we do not approve; we should not pretend that the world and its language do not exist ... So it seems to me that when you think a character would say this or do that, he should probably say this and do that. Hastily diverting the stream of his or her personality will only create awkwardness. The story works better when you allow them to be true to their characters. Seriously. It does ... Maybe we as the authors don't condone it, but we don't have to sermonize about it (that's even worse than not using the word in the first place). We ought to write with understanding and compassion for the nature of man in all his God-made glory - fallen glory, yes, but glory all the same. That includes the imperfections and the red-blooded passion of the real world. It includes those cutting words, that total love, the acts they regret when all's said and done. If we don't write like this, who will?"

I know that I'm going to offend some people, but I want to reach beyond Christian Fiction readers to inspire and move people who don't know God. I want to write honest fiction that reaches them where they are and inspires young people to rise up and do good amidst their struggles and sins. Like Brandon Clemons says:

"If I started making concessions for the Christian who is offended, then I think the book would have begun to lose a lot of its power and authenticity to the most important intended audience. Because if you try to write for everyone, you end up writing for no one."


Interview With Jack Lewis Baillot

Today I'm excited to be sharing about Jack Lewis Baillot's WWII novel, Brothers-in-Arms which releases on May 31st! You may recall that I was an advance reader and reviewed her book HERE.

If you're looking for a Christian WWII novel that rips your heart out and has fantastic, diverse characters, then you're gonna want to read this. And it definitely needs to be turned into a movie.

To help celebrate the book release, I recently interviewed the author. Sit back, grab a cup of joe, and enjoy!

How long have you been a writer?
I've been writing since I was thirteen. I've been telling stories for longer, both to myself and my brothers. Anyone who wanted to listen to stories about a road who got tried of being driven on and moved to the country or about how bear claw cakes got their names would have a story. When I started to write at thirteen I never stopped.

What’s your writing routine like?
I make tea, put on my glasses if I remember, my wrist brace, music, turn on my fairy lights, and sit in front of my computer in the hopes the voices in my head will be kind and tell me their story. Then I will write for a few hours and when I stop I usually have pages of some person's adventure I never plotted out. (My characters all change my plots so I don't even bother anymore. They assume they are smarter than me.)

How long did it take you to write and edit Brothers-in-Arms?
The first draft took me a month. After that there was editing, re-writing, fixing the plot holes, crying, whining, slamming doors, drinking coffee, more tears, more editing, and by the time that all finished a year and a half had passed. So a year and a half to completely finish it, and a month to write it.

Since Brothers-in-Arms is historical fiction how did you go about researching for this book?
I don't head to text books when I research. Instead I invaded the library for every WWII biography I could get my hands on. I found them to be more helpful as I could see what the men and women were like back then and what they felt. Also I got to learn the stories of many amazing people, like Louie Zamperini.

What are some of your favorite WWII books and movies?
Uggg....this is kind of hard because I have a ton. Unbroken is top and fits both. Then A Higher Call, Band of Brothers and the books the men wrote after that one, the Band of Brothers mini series, Aces High, Moonless Night, Beyond the Call. And then the movies, Monuments Men - the book is amazing too - The Great Escape, Into the White, you can see it is a long list and it keeps growing.

Do you plot out your stories or just write and see what happens?
I did this one already on accident...awkward. I tried to plot...then they all laughed and changed it and I gave up. (Brothers-in-Arms is a fine example of this. All the tears, that wasn't supposed to be in it.)

What's your favorite part of being a published author?
I fulfilled my childhood dream. And now I can go around and shout at strangers, "I'M AN AUTHOR! BOW TO ME!" Not that I've done it yet but it is nice having that power.

Are you working on any other projects?
Always. One I am very excited for. *Tigger bounce*

Any advice for writers?
Don't give up. If you love to write then write. If it is hard that is okay, it gets hard. But never give up. It is always worth it to keep pushing on.

Jack is one of those strange people who calls herself an Author. She spends a lot of her time writing and even less time editing. She likes to write about friendships which is partly how Brothers-in-Arms came to be. More than ten years in the making, this is the book she dreaded the most writing, but which also has the most meaning for her.
When Jack isn’t writing, which doesn’t happen too often, she keeps busy with various other hobbies – such as reading, playing the bagpipes to the dread of her neighbors, and drinking tea – which might not be considered a hobby by most but which should be.
She lives in a cabin in the woods with her dog and a library which isn’t quite equal to Prince Adam’s but will be given enough time and a secret doorway.
Follow Jack on: Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Blog | Pinterest

Hop on over to her blog and enter for a chance to win an autographed copy of Brothers-in-Arms!


Happy Birthday, Sophie Scholl

In honor of Sophie Scholl's birthday, I'm sharing an excerpt from Resist. Sophie has just arrived in Munich to study at the university. It's her 21st birthday and her older brother, Hans, has invited his friends over to meet his sister and celebrate what would be her last birthday.

I stood beside a teetering tower of my medical texts, watching as Sophie gazed up at the French Impressionist paintings pinned all over my walls. It wasn’t so unlike my bedroom at home. I was always a great adorer of books, and yet, I let them lie where they might. I was certainly not a great adorer of bookshelves and didn’t pretend to be.
“I’m so eager to meet your friends. I feel like I already know them from all your letters.” Sophie sat on the edge of my bed, the only clear seating in my apartment. I was attempting to clear off my chairs, but it wasn’t an easy feat. I picked up a stack of thick tomes and peered around for a place to set them. Finding none, I set them back down with a heavy sigh.
My friends would just have to stand.
“I’m sure they feel the same way. I’ve told them all about you.” I drummed my fingers on the book covers thoughtfully, wondering how much space was in my closet. I dismissed the thought. There were more books in there.
“Only good things I hope?”
I gave her a mischievous grin. Before Sophie could question me, a rapping sounded at the door. “Come in, Alex.”
Alex entered, nearly bumping his head on the door frame. I was still preoccupied with finding seating space, so I made a half-hearted introduction while lifting my blankets to peer under my bed. Suitcases, shoes, a bit of dust—no space whatsoever.  
“Sophie, this is my friend from the university, Alexander Schmorell. Alex, this is my little sister, Sophie.”
Sophie stood up, extending a hand shyly. She was withdrawn and contemplative before knowing a person, but once you had her friendship, she was lively and cheerful. “I’m pleased to meet you. I’ve heard so much about you that I rather feel like we’re old friends.”
“Exactly my feelings. Hans can go on for ages discussing his family back in Ulm. Let’s see if I can get the Scholl siblings straight.” He scratched his chin thoughtfully. “Inge, Hans, Elizabeth, Sophie, and … Werner.” He glanced from Sophie to me. “Did I get everyone in the correct order?”
“I’m impressed,” Sophie grinned.
“Heaven be praised, is that cake?” Alex hurried over to the desk where I was now unpacking the dense cake onto a pile of papers. Mother would have a fit if she knew her cake was being placed on a pile of school assignments.
“What would a birthday party be without cake and wine?” Sophie raised a brow.
“It’d be duller than Mein Kampf.” I handed Sophie a knife. “Would you slice it? I’m not confident when it comes to culinary matters, unfortunately.”
“What on earth do you mean? Don’t you remember that time you baked a cake for mother’s birthday?”
“Hans baked?” Alex’s mouth dropped open. “Any more secret talents you haven’t shared with your friends, Hans?”
“Yes, I baked a cake. Inge and Elizabeth refused to help me. I suppose they wished to see me left to my own devices.”
“So I helped him,” Sophie said. “But the trouble is, I’m not very good in the kitchen now, let alone when I was twelve.”
“Well? How did it turn out?”
I exchanged a glance with Sophie, and we both grinned. “We had to leave the windows open for two days to allow ventilation throughout our house,” I said. “I burned it beyond the scope of imagination.”
“But don’t worry,” Sophie said. “Mother knows how to bake divine cakes.” She sunk the blade into the white cake, setting a large slice onto a plate.
“Ah! I heartily approve of the way your sister slices cake.” Alex cheered as Sophie handed him the plate.
Another knock sounded at the door, bringing in Christl. He was smoking a pipe and donning a cap which he promptly took off upon entering the room.
“Christl, good to see you.” I slapped my friend’s shoulder. “Sophie, this is Christoph Probst. How are your boys, Christl?”
“Good as gold. Well, except for Vincent. He’s teething unfortunately. Cries a fit,” Christl spoke between the pipe clenched in his teeth. His blue eyes fell on Sophie. “Pleased to meet you, Sophie. My! You two are the spitting image of each other. Remarkable.”
“Oh, poor girl,” I teased. “I’m sorry, Sophie.”
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Christl. May I call you Christl?” Sophie gave me a shove in response to my jesting.
“Of course. No one has called me Christoph since my mother did when I was a child. Say ‘Christoph,’ and I’ll be under the impression that I’m to whitewash the house as punishment for something.”
“There’s no fear of whitewashing anything, Christl. Care for a slice of cake?”
“Sounds splendid.”
Sophie set a generous slice on a plate for him. His eyes widened, and he gazed at her in awe. “Is there a war going on? I can hardly tell from such delicacies.”
“Our mother is an angel. I don’t know how she manages to save enough rations.” I glanced at my watch impatiently. “If Willi is any later, he won’t get a slice of cake. Three-fourths of it have already vanished before our very eyes. Ah, is that him at the door now?”
Willi strolled in, his round face ruddy from the brisk evening. He wasn’t nearly as outgoing as Alex or as laidback as Christl. He was quiet, with pensive eyes. “Willi Graf, it’s about time you arrived. Sophie’s birthday cake is all but gone.” I pointed to what was left of the cake.
Willi nodded toward Sophie. “Happy birthday, Miss Scholl.”
“Oh, I’m Sophie. Please call me Sophie. We’re all good friends here, and I certainly don’t intend to call you Mr. Graf.”
Willi grinned. “Sophie, it’s a pleasure to meet you.”
“How about a game?” Alex asked after he had finished off his cake. He took a long sip of water, wiping his mouth with the back of his sleeve. “We each provide a bit of poetry, and the rest of us must guess who authored it.”
“All right. Who’ll go first?” I turned toward my sister. “Sophie?”
“This is hardly fair. Hans is so well versed in all the great poets I adore. He’ll win on the spot.”
“I don’t mind,” I shrugged.
“Oh, come. Surely there must be a poem even Hans Scholl can’t place,” Alex reclined in a chair he had cleared off, a pipe wedged in the corner of his mouth.
Sophie was silent for a long moment, strumming her fingers along the desk. “All right. I have one. ‘A single fir-tree, lonely, on a northern mountain height, sleeps in a white blanket, draped in snow and ice. His dreams are of a palm-tree, who, far in eastern lands, weeps, all alone and silent, among the burning sands.’”
I was about to blurt out the poet, but stopped myself. I really ought to let everyone ponder it a moment and not spoil the fun. Willi’s head was bent. Alex peered up at the ceiling. Christl was leaning forward in his seat, and I was grinning like a school boy who just got away with inflicting an antic upon my teacher.
“Heinrich Heine, naturally.” I finally let my words break the silence.
“Oh, Hans!” Sophie thrust a book at me, and I dodged it with a gale of laughter.
“Now, may I present one, or are you all angry with me?” I peered around for an answer.
“Go on,” Christl waved a hand at me.
I opened my wallet and pulled out a typewritten page. “This one will surely baffle you. Are you all ready?”
Four heads nodded. I cleared my throat. “‘From his dark den there comes a robber to waylay us; He wants to snatch our purses, but finds a better booty; a quarrel over nothing, confused and ignorant rant, a nation's banner torn, a people dull and stupid. Wherever he goes he finds the times are lean and empty, so he can step forth brazenly and play the role of prophet. He boldly plants his foot on the rubbish heap around him and hisses his venal message to an astonished world. Cloaked in deceit and malice, that wraps him like a cloud, he stands before the people, the mightiest in the land. The hands of many helpers of low and high degree, espying their advantage, bring service to his will. They carry forth his message as formerly the angels had done with the five loaves. It rattles on and on! Where once but one man lied, today they come by thousands; and roaring like the storm, his gold draws interest now. It grows to a great harvest, the social order overthrown, the masses live in infamy and laugh at every scurvy deed. It turns out to be true, what first was fabrication: the good have disappeared, the bad come out in crowds! When one day this trouble will melt like winter’s ice, the people will recall it like the very Plague itself. They’ll raise an effigy of straw; let children on the hearth burn joy from out of sorrow, and light from ancient woe.’”
The room was cast in a spell from the heady words, and no one broke the silence for a long moment.
“That was brilliant.” Christl leaned back with a sigh. “I’m sure I don’t know who penned it.”
Alex slapped his knee. “Let us mimeograph this splendid piece of literature and drop it all over Germany from the sky.”
“We’ll naturally dedicate it to our great F├╝hrer,” Willi gleamed.
The room erupted in light-hearted laughter until I finally held a finger to my lips to silence them. “There are other people living in this building, you know.”
“You wrote it, I’ll wager,” Alex pointed a finger at me. “It sounds like something you’d write.”
“No, I didn’t. It was penned in 1878 by Gottfried Keller. It’s terribly ironic that the verses don’t have anything to do with Germany. They are about a conflict in Switzerland.”
“They suit the current situation of the Fatherland perfectly,” Christl said. “Amazing.”
“Well,” Alex stood up, stretching his arms over his head. “This has been fun, but shouldn't we stroll outdoors now? We could chill the wine in the English Garden. What do you all say to that?”
The outdoors constantly beckoned me, and I could only resist its plea for so long. Sophie must have felt the same way, for she jumped up enthusiastically, a broad smile on her face. “Yes, let’s. Hans, bring your guitar, won’t you?”’
“All right, though it’s been ages since I’ve played.” I snatched my instrument from where it lay in the corner of my room, dusted it off then followed the party outside. The cool spring evening was exhilarating. The full moon battled with the clouds, struggling to bring its light to the world below.
“Do you approve of Hans’ choice of friends?” Alex turned to Sophie, as we strolled down the damp road. Flower petals stuck to the brick, and the air smelled musky.   
“He couldn’t find nicer anywhere in the world.”
“Hans, I dearly like your sister.” Alex’s voice was light, as if he didn’t have a care in the world.
But I knew better. We all had cares—an extremely perilous one in particular.
We arrived at the English Garden, and I tied a thick string around the bottle of wine, gently placing it in the brisk water of the Isar river. I sank onto the damp grass and ran my fingers along the guitar strings. “It’s your birthday, Sophie. What shall we sing?”
“How about … Die Gedanken Sind Frei.
“Excellent choice,” Christl leaned his back against a tree. “Go on, Hans. Serenade us.”
I began to play, the music drifting into the night air where it mingled with the cosmos.

Die Gedanken Sind Frei, my thoughts freely flower,
Die Gedanken Sind Frei, my thoughts give me power,
No scholar can map them, no hunter can trap them,
No man can deny, Die Gedanken Sind Frei.

Find out what happens next:


What I Learned From Self-Publishing

When I decided to self-publish Resist, I thought I knew what I was doing. I mean, I'd already self-published two other books.

Cue Katherine Plummer singing, "I have no clue what I'm doing!"

Once I was knee deep in the self-publishing process, I ran into the same problems that I obviously didn't learn from when publishing my other books. I was a bit frazzled (understatement of the year) in February, the month of Resist's release. My mother in her innate wisdom suggested I write down what I learned in a blog post for two reasons. 

1. To help others not to make the same mistakes I did. 

2. So I won't make the same mistakes I did. 

So mother, I'm taking your advice. 


I never give myself enough time to publish a book. The average time for all three books has been three months. Three months seemed like forever when I made the decision to self-publish. When I make up my mind on something I want to dive into right then and get it done immediately ... a blessing and a curse of my personality. But really, those three months flew by. 

I decided on February 22nd to release Resist. Since I'm a self-published author, you might be wondering why I didn't just adjust the deadline if I was pressed for time. Well, I had already announced the release date of my book and really wanted to come through on my promise. Also, February 22nd is a very significant date in Resist and I couldn't imagine publishing it on any other date, and I didn't want to wait an entire year for it to come again.

Give yourself lots of time. Three months may seem doable, but you never know what's going to happen. My grandma was very sick and passed away while I was getting Resist ready for publication. It was an extremely emotional few months, making it really hard to work on my book. I was away from home and my laptop broke during this time. Leave room for the unexpected.

Set a deadline for having your book finished a month before your release date. Building up book release momentum takes time. Organizing a blog tour takes time. Figuring out formatting and Createspace takes time. Save yourself late nights of sobbing into your keyboard and give yourself time. 

For my first two books, I paid Rachel Rossano to format both the paperback and the kindle. But what do you do when you'd spent all your money on a British Enfield for WWII reenacting?! That's the situation I found myself in while publishing Resist. I didn't have the money and I really wanted to learn how to format to save money in the future.

Well, I tried. I watched YouTube video after YouTube video and made some progress but my formatting skills are lacking, and I didn't give myself time to sharpen those skills. It was an aggravating process, one I did not enjoy at all. I spent so much time and effort on formatting but nothing I did was publishing worthy. Out of desperation, I went ahead and ordered a paperback and kindle template on Book Design Templates for less than $50. I was pleasantly surprised. This template was super easy to use, made my book look clean and professional, and saved me hours of trying to understand the the man with the British accent on YouTube. 

This is not to say I'll never learn how to format a book from scratch. I just couldn't afford to loose any more time at that point, and this template was a life savor. Do what works for you. If you have the time to learn, go for it. If you don't, look into hiring someone like Rachel Rossano or purchasing a pre-made template. 

Resist was the first time I made my own book cover. I wrote a tutorial on how to make your own ebook cover HERE. That worked great, and I was feeling pretty good about my design skills. Well, then came the dreaded spine and back cover. I spent countless hours trying to do everything myself. 

Psssh, how hard can this be?

I ordered about five proof copies throughout the entire process. Each time a mistake stared back at me. I even tried hiring someone on Fiverr (never again). This went on until literally the final week before Resist was scheduled to be released. I was desperate. I'm a perfectionist and couldn't bear the thought of releasing it until it was perfect. (FYI, it's not perfect. But I did my best.) I contacted Jenny from Historical Fiction Book Covers, and she took my spine/back cover design and formatted it for a very affordable price within 24 hours. GOD BLESS YOU, JENNY!!! 

Would I like to learn how to format my spine/back cover? Yes!
Did I give myself enough time? Hahahahaha. Nope.


This is an extremely important step in getting your book ready for publication. The story is the most important part, and you want that to shine. Give your editors time to read through your manuscript, but also give them an attainable deadline. Sending them the manuscript and saying, "Oh and by the way, can you have this done by tomorrow night?" isn't a way to keep friends. Ok, I didn't do that ... but even two weeks is asking a lot. Editors like having a deadline, so be upfront about when you need the manuscript back. If you give yourself enough time for the entire publishing process then both you and your editors will feel more relaxed. 


There's an awesome tool called ACX which makes it possible for your book to be turned into audio. Amazing, right? I wrote a post about that HERE. Even though I had already gone through this with It Took a War, I forgot how long it takes after the narrator has submitted his files for review.  ACX takes up to 10 days after you think the book is done, not counting any audio problems that may need tweaking. If you want the audiobook to be released the same time as your paperback, schedule accordingly. It's better for the audiobook to be done weeks before the release date than weeks after.


Upload your book to Createspace days before your intended release date. While it's true that the book is usually up on Amazon within 12 hours, Amazon says it can take up to a week. I'm not sure it ever takes that long, but better safe than sorry. You can have it listed on Amazon, but don't tell your fans until release day. If you do that, make sure your book is completely ready to be published. I made the mistake of uploading Resist before the release day when it still had typos. I was hurrying to make sure the cover would turn out all right, so instead of buying my book through Createspace (authors copies are cheaper) I ordered it off Amazon using Prime shipping. Then I quickly took it off so I could fix those typos. But guess what? According to Createspace, I had already sold 6 or 7 that day. Suffice it to say, I wasn't in a very good mood that day. I'm still trying to shake it off, but it still bothers me that there are some copies floating around that weren't ready for publication. Moral of the story? Whenever you're listing it on Amazon, make sure it's ready. You never know who might snatch up your book! 

Blog Tour

Writing 16+ guests posts/interviews in one week ... this is a chronic problem for me. At least I started the process a bit earlier with Resist, but I was still typing up guest posts the week of my book release. NOT FUN. If you're offering to guest post or be interviewed on someone's blog, get those posts done weeks beforehand. Don't email them weeks beforehand, but have them ready for release week so that you can enjoy release week! To keep everything organized for the tour, hop on over to Google Forms. Explain what sort of posts your offering, then include a place for bloggers to leave contact information, a blog link, and a date to post it. Follow up with the bloggers, reminding them of their commitment and thank them for helping.

I honestly didn't think everything would fall into place on February 22nd. It just seemed like I was running into problem after problem. But God took this frazzled little author and finally got through to her that He's got this.

If you're a self-publish author, what have you learned through the process? If you're not a self-published author and have any questions, shoot!